Cascade Mall shooting
|2016 Cascade Mall shooting|
|Part of mass shootings in the United States|
|Location||Cascade Mall, Burlington, Washington, U.S.|
|Date||September 23, 2016 |
6:52 p.m. (PDT)
|Mass shooting, mass murder|
|Weapons||Ruger 10/22 rifle|
On September 23, 2016, a mass shooting occurred at Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington, U.S. Five people were killed in the incident. The gunman was identified as Arcan Cetin, a 20-year-old who emigrated from Turkey as a child with his family. He was arrested the following day in Oak Harbor, Washington, his hometown. On September 26, he confessed to committing the shooting. On April 16, 2017, Cetin committed suicide by hanging himself in his jail cell.
On September 23, 2016, Cetin bought tickets to an evening showing of the movie Snowden at Cascade Mall in Burlington, Washington. He propped open the theater's exit door with his cell phone and left the theater, an action reminiscent of how the 2012 Aurora, Colorado shooting was carried out. However, a theater associate found the phone and turned it in to a theater kiosk, where Cetin subsequently retrieved it. Shortly before 7:00 p.m. PDT on the same day, Cetin walked into a Macy's store at Cascade Mall with a stolen rifle and opened fire, killing four women and one man, the latter of whom died the next day at a Seattle hospital.
Video footage of the shooting, released on October 28, showed the gunman randomly targeting his victims. He first killed a woman near some clothing racks, then approached a cosmetics counter, where he killed one man and three women. All of the victims were shot at close range, while others present in the store escaped unharmed because of their distance from the shooter. Afterwards, the gunman abandoned his weapon and fled the scene in a blue four-door vehicle.
Five people were killed in the shooting. They were Sarai Lara (16), a sophomore at Mount Vernon High School and cancer survivor; Chuck Eagan (61), a Boeing maintenance worker from Lake Stevens; Belinda Galde (64), a probation officer with the Snohomish County District Court; Beatrice Dotson (95), Galde's mother; and Shayla Martin (52), a make-up artist at Macy's.
Cetin was charged with "premeditated intent" on five counts of aggravated murder, a charge that was upgraded from the initial charge of first-degree premeditated murder. The charge of aggravated murder is punishable by a sentence of life without parole, or, at the time of the shooting, by the death penalty.
Arcan Cetin (pronounced [aɾˈdʒan tʃeˈtin], August 20, 1996 – April 16, 2017) was born in Adana, Turkey. He immigrated to the United States as a child after his mother married a U.S. citizen. Authorities initially identified him as a "permanent resident" until further investigation found that he was a naturalized American citizen. He graduated from Oak Harbor High School in 2015 and worked as a bagger at the Commissary in Naval Air Station Whidbey Island.
Cetin was arrested without incident on the evening of September 24 while he was walking on Oak Harbor Road at Northeast Seventh Avenue in Oak Harbor, Washington. Two days later, he confessed to the shooting. Cetin was charged with five counts of aggravated murder. He was being evaluated for mental health concerns.
Cetin had prior arrests; he was a defendant in seven cases in Island County District Court from 2013 to 2015 and was arrested in July 2015 on charges of assault in the fourth degree. Cetin was ordered to undergo mental health counseling, which he completed in March 2016. The court also imposed an order for him not to take drugs or drink alcohol. As of August 25, 2016, no breach of the court order against Cetin had been identified.
On April 17, 2017, the media reported that Cetin had hanged himself the previous night in the Snohomish County Jail. An investigation by the Snohomish County Sheriff's Office concluded that Cetin had committed suicide.
Police have not determined a motive for the shooting. Before Cetin's arrest, authorities stated they had no reason to believe the incident was related to terrorism. Cetin told authorities that he was interested in the activities of ISIS, but when asked if the terrorist group had inspired his actions he replied, "I can't answer that." On social media, Cetin posted photos of serial killer Ted Bundy and Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
On September 25, 2016, reports said that Cetin may have been motivated by the break-up of a relationship with a worker from the Macy's store he targeted, but at the time the ex-girlfriend had not worked there in months and lived in another county. Authorities alleged that Cetin called out women's names as he killed his victims during the shooting.
Initial reporting had revealed that Cetin had completed the legal steps to become a voter and had voted three times despite apparently not being a United States citizen. According to Washington's Secretary of State Kim Wyman, his voting "shined a light in a hole in the voter registration system" as county auditors were not allowed to check the citizenship of voters; Wyman said she would submit a package to the legislature addressing this. It was later determined that Cetin was a naturalized US citizen and therefore permitted to vote.
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Lara, a Mount Vernon High School sophomore, was one of five people killed when a gunman opened fire in the Burlington department store.
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Chuck Eagan, a longtime Boeing maintenance worker from Lake Stevens, was also a victim, according to his aunt, Carol Thrush. She said Eagan and his wife had gone out to dinner and to the mall to shop and were in Macy's when the shooter began his rampage.
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The Snohomish County District Court in a statement identified Belinda Galde as an employee with the court since 1989.
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Beatrice was 95 years old.
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In posts on his Facebook page, Cetin described himself as working as a bagger at Whidbey Island Commissary
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Acquaintances say Cetin had been working at the commissary at Naval Air Station on Whidbey Island.
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